NZ Election 2020
October 15, 2020 9:45 PM   Subscribe

The 2020 New Zealand General Election will be held on Saturday 17 October. New Zealanders will also be voting in two referendums:
1) whether terminally ill people will have the option of assisted dying
2) whether the recreational use of cannabis should become legal.

The Government’s response to the Covid pandemic has proven to be the dominant factor in this election campaign. After a second outbreak of cases in August, community transmission has again been eliminated for now with only imported cases captured by a 2 week border quarantine persisting. Auckland joined the rest of New Zealand at Alert Level 1 (the lowest Covid alert level) at 11:59pm on Wednesday 7 October.

What's going to happen in the election?

A Labour Government, perhaps with support from the Green Party, is the likely result if the polls are to be believed.

What about the Referendums?

A late poll suggests yes to Assisted Dying and no to legalisation of cannabis use.

When will we know?
Over half of New Zealanders have already had their say by advanced voting. These advance votes begin to be counted at 9am on election day. Polls close at 7pm on election night and general election counts will start arriving shortly thereafter. However, preliminary referendum results will only be revealed on Friday October 30. Official results for both the general election and the referendums will be announced on Friday November 6.

Find the Official Election Results here
posted by Start with Dessert (83 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Dangit I've been meaning to post this video, featuring the Electoral Commission's mascot in an unusual role.

(I feel there's a whole post to be made about the Orange Guy but meh, 2020 has got to me.)
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 10:20 PM on October 15 [9 favorites]

Commenting from a cannabis legal state...

It's not a huge deal. Come on NZ.
posted by Windopaene at 10:24 PM on October 15 [9 favorites]

Incidentally I think it tells you a lot about NZ that I just played that video for my partner, who hadn't seen it, and after laughing her head off, she asked "is that official?!"
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 10:27 PM on October 15 [2 favorites]

Windopaene: the "No" vote campaign got an early start, and seems to have benefited from a truckload of money from overseas sources including Scientology front groups. By contrast the "Yes" campaign was late to the party. It's a damned shame. Fingers crossed it squeaks through.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 10:34 PM on October 15 [2 favorites]

Dangit I've been meaning to post this video, featuring the Electoral Commission's mascot in an unusual role.

Cool video, but I couldn't help thinking that the electoral material looked a bit soggy, as if the house was damp and uninsulated.
posted by Joe in Australia at 11:07 PM on October 15 [11 favorites]

It's not a huge deal. Come on NZ.

Well, hold on, is it being legalized correctly? I know in Canada there's only a few, large scale commercial growers. It seems like it echoes post-prohibition alcohol which is another heavily regulated industry where only a few players with political and fiscal capital were able to successfully setup a market. Highly regulated markets create highly concentrated industries. How long were the only beers readily available in the US Miller and Budweiser?

I see no reason it shouldn't be regulated like tomatoes or other plants. Limiting people to an arbitrary one or two plants creates perverse incentives.
posted by geoff. at 11:21 PM on October 15 [2 favorites]

We voted this afternoon, no queue, all safely paper-based, I wanted to photo (and tweet) the ballot boxes as there were four or five alternating purple and orange boxes all in a line - but it was strictly Forbidden.

But thank all the gods for NZ's Electoral Commission.
posted by unearthed at 11:48 PM on October 15 [4 favorites]

Everyone should watch the Flight of the Conchords-esque earwormy retro-pop "Schoolhouse Rock" explanation of NZ's electoral system.
posted by Paragon at 12:22 AM on October 16 [11 favorites]

Voted last week. Polling places as far as the eye can see. Or at least one 500m from my office. No lines/queues, hand-sanitiser, single-use pen, 60sec to find my name on the polling papers, 1 min to have the paper ballot & referendum explained to me and 30s to tick boxes and pop the papers into ballot boxes. Back at my desk in 5min, no muss no fuss.

Having worked at the Chief Electoral Office as a vendor in 2008 I can safely say they run a super-slick operation and take it deadly serious in-spite of the friction-free voting processes from the publics perspective.

I remember the reporting website on election-night getting slammed as people kept refreshing to watch the results come in and the squid proxies groaning under the load while we watched from the Ministry of Justice (at the time the Electoral Office was an adjunct of MoJ) offices. Was almost exciting (although I'm sure the people running the voting processes would prefer it stayed super-dull and excitement free) & pretty cool to experience as a bystander on the inside.

Hopefully the results this year will see a real progressive swing and a mandate for change.
posted by phigmov at 12:34 AM on October 16 [2 favorites]

I work for the people who look after the reporting website (among other things) for the Electoral Commission and it's probably gonna go ok, don't worry.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:47 AM on October 16 [2 favorites]

So the election that no-one really wanted finally reaches its conclusion. I feel like most of us would have been happy to let the current government just keep going and deal with the pandemic, and then worry about an election. And then when the second outbreak put it back another month...

Such a strange one. Until COVID happened it was looking like a coinflip, then Labour dealt with the outbreak so well that their popularity skyrocketed. National continued to downplay COVID and suggest that we open the borders, even though the public was against it. Tanking in the polls, they changed leader, twice.

Labour (probably rightly) are running on their response to COVID, rather than their less impressive performance in the two years before then. National have two policies, cut tax and build roads, and that doesn't seem sufficient. They also appear to continuedly shoot themselves in the foot (having insulted fat people and Australians in the last two days, following a staged walkabout where their leader "met" random people on the street, including an easily-recognised party activist). The Greens have a long and detailed policy platform that no-one really cares about. ACT (the classic liberal/libertarian party) will get loads of MPs that no-one knows anything about. New Zealand First will once again be punished by their voters for entering government.

At least the weird parties (New Conservative and the COVID conspiracist Advance) won't achieve anything.
posted by Pink Frost at 12:54 AM on October 16 [9 favorites]

Re the website: we'll basically know the results at 7:01 right? So probably not so much refreshing needed. With so many advance votes this is likely to be over soon.

Hopefully the results this year will see a real progressive swing and a mandate for change.

Sadly, that implies that Labour actually wants to make significant changes, and I don't really see anything in their policies or public statements to suggest that.
posted by Pink Frost at 1:10 AM on October 16

Hopefully NZ will vote yes on both, if only to differentiate themselves from their conservative neighbour and near-flagmate across the Tasman. Everyone knows how much the Kiwis hate being mistaken for Australians.
posted by acb at 1:29 AM on October 16

There are so many wild aspects to this election.

Labour is coasting high on their famously effective Covid-19 response and the popularity of leader Jacinda Ardern (who was thought to be on the shortlist for this year's Nobel Peace Prize). Since becoming prime minister she has also weathered a fatal volcanic eruption, the largest terrorist attack in NZ history, and giving birth. Labour has mostly failed at curbing the country's housing crisis, child poverty crisis, healthcare crisis, tourism crisis, or climate crisis...

The main opposition party, National, has cycled through three leaders since May. They've currently settled on Judith "Crusher" Collins - a stalwart of the right-wing wing of the party whose selection added to a long chain of high-profile exits from sitting National MPs. Collins was a key player in the Dirty Politics scandal, which involved using right-wing bloggers to target opponents of the party. The National campaign has been marked by a series of gaffs and own-goals, including some very awkwardly staged "meet the people" events and random fat-shaming.

Winston Peters, the deputy prime minister and leader of the populist NZ First party, is looking at political oblivion based on current polls. He has been in parliament nearly continuously for 41 years and has been in coalition with both left- and right-wing governments. His strong focus on the senior vote and his notorious journalism-hate has seen him this far, but NZ First has run into some campaign finance scandals and that may be the party's death-knell.

The Māori Party has adopted a controversial position on immigration that is dividing the party; on current polling they're not getting into parliament either.

The New Conservatives are trying to bring American-style social conservatism and Handmaid's Tale-esque policies to the conversation, but are polling poorly because everyone finds them creepy. This new party was born out of the ashes of the Conservative Party after their leader was embroiled in an entirely predictable train-wreck scandal with his press secretary.

Speaking of American-style politics, the fringe conspiracy party Advance NZ had its Facebook page shut down for pandemic-related misinformation. The attitude of most NZers to this was summarised by Winston Peters: "Sorry sunshine, wrong place."

Based on some recent polling the Greens have a good chance of getting into government again; they seem to be the only ones focusing on social justice and climate change so of course everyone else makes fun of them. They're mostly reliant on the youth vote, the hippy vote, and the academic vote.

Libertarian party ACT have traditionally relied on the National Party not contesting the Epsom seat in order to stay in parliament, but they're polling above the 5% threshold to get in on the basis of the national vote and look likely to be the key beneficiaries of disenchanted National voters. Act Party leader and notorious twerker David Seymour has received more votes for his turn on TV reality show Dancing With the Stars than he has received as an electoral candidate.
posted by Paragon at 1:31 AM on October 16 [20 favorites]

> "Labour (probably rightly) are running on their response to COVID"

I have to say, "Look out there, look in here, note you are not dead" sounds like a pretty compelling platform.
posted by kyrademon at 1:34 AM on October 16 [5 favorites]

A nice not-too-boastful tweet from Richard Easther:
Free, no-wait, no appointment pop-up Covid testing on your left, no queue early voting on your right (one of dozens hereabouts). Sometimes we do just nail it.
posted by Paragon at 1:58 AM on October 16 [3 favorites]

I have to say, "Look out there, look in here, note you are not dead" sounds like a pretty compelling platform.

Well indeed. And while much of the success of our response can be attributed to the hard-working public servants who've been on this all year (*coughs modestly*), I think the PM's response was really 10/10 and contributed a lot to our success.

acb: Hopefully NZ will vote yes on both

Gotta disagree on this one, I'm taking a lead from disabled and Maori voices, who really don't want the euthanasia law to go through (this isn't the best article, but isn't bad). Legalising weed is a no-brainer though.

Paragon: your post compared to mine is eponysterical. Thanks for all the links.
posted by Pink Frost at 2:03 AM on October 16 [6 favorites]

Here's hoping the legalization goes through. Having it illegal is all down side.

So it's been exactly a year since cannabis was legalized here. The only downside in Canada (not getting into the business aspect of it) is the smell. Half my neighborhood smells of growing weed. Though admittedly my neighbourhood is atypical in that most people already have a garden so the addition of weed for whomever wants to partake is essentially no effort at all.

Still, annoying. You can't really smell tomatoes growing from the street.

Also you're allowed four plants per household which is just a stupefyingly large amount of cannabis. If everyone continues to grow it's going to be as hard to sell commercial weed as it would be to sell zucchini in the summer.

However now in the U.S with legal states whether medicinal or recreational Leaf is now most commonly used by individuals to make concentrated THC by way of Butane Hash Oil (extremely high potency THC), which is also on a side note causing a lot of explosions and fires in the U.S.
Haven't heard of anyone doing this and certainly no explosions/fires. And I live in weed central.
posted by Mitheral at 7:11 AM on October 16

Well, hold on, is it being legalized correctly?

Of all the compelling arguments to pump the breaks on legalization I can't say this one lands on my top 100. From my vantage in Canada, any potential negatives from the commercial aspects are easily offset by.. I dunno.. the sheer relief that at least one ridiculous restraint on society has been removed. I have never personally been a heavy user, or of late even a moderate to mild user, but it has been fun to see how the stuff grows in the boreal climate.. It has been cool to see local farmers experiment with commercial hemp crops (never in my life has this happened in my area till now).

On a beer note, I look around and see a Golden Age of craft breweries coming on in Western Canada. No, cannabis legalization in the country, so far as I see it, has been a boon. In the long term is this one more step towards the enslavement of a population via a combination of recreational drug use, pharma-culture, surveillance, etc? Shee-it, you don't even have to get stoned to see that one coming.
posted by elkevelvet at 9:02 AM on October 16 [3 favorites]

I was today years old when I learned about MMP and damn I wish we had it in US.

The cheesy Conchord video was quite informative!

I'd love to hear Kiwi thoughts on whether this newshub article on "confidence and supply" is accurate.
posted by Jesse the K at 9:18 AM on October 16 [1 favorite]

So it's been exactly a year since cannabis was legalized here.

Two years. This confusion is understandable as 2020 is... well, it’s 2020. April was five months long and September passed in 96 hours.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:22 AM on October 16 [3 favorites]

D'oh, of course. Two years. Which I guess is actually better support of my view. The scary bad things projected have had twice as long to propagate and basically haven't.

Confidence and supply is a typical way multiparty parliamentary systems work. Canada has this going on at the federal level with the governing but minority Liberal party and the NDP giving them the votes to pass legislation in return for concessions.
posted by Mitheral at 10:28 AM on October 16

It's election day now in NZ so rules against electioneering apply until the polls close at 7pm (in 11.5 hours time).

In the meantime, here are doggos at the polls.
posted by Start with Dessert at 11:32 AM on October 16 [1 favorite]

Jesse the K: yep it's a reasonable summary.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:16 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

You know, its refreshing as an offshore NZ'er that the triumvirate of topics people normally bring up when I tell them I'm from down there has changed from (in order of most common) All Blacks, Lord of the Rings, and occasionally the Flight of the Conchords to pretty much be Jacinda Ardern and then the All Blacks.

On a Zoom call today a US colleague, who disclosed he'd never been to the Southern Hemisphere, commented that "if she doesn't win today, send her our way". I'm confident "she" wasn't a reference to Judith Collins.

Nothing in the above reduces my desire for the AB's to beat Australia this weekend in the second Bledisloe, or the heartburn I had last weekend that the draw in Wellington would impact the mood of the nation in a certain way. This weekend is all about some celebratory s'mores in the cold fall evening, carving pumpkins, and having two kids fall asleep before the 9pm MT Saturday kick-off on ESPN+ (I'll let them watch it "live" on Sunday morning...)

posted by inflatablekiwi at 2:08 PM on October 16

The Pupdates are starting to come through on #DogsAtPollingStations
posted by phigmov at 2:17 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

Same experience with me, inflatablekiwi. I moved to the US right around the second LOTR movie. So I heard hobbit jokes for years. Then years of people saying "Brit" (for Brett). Now I get "OMG, New Zealand, I LOVE your president, are you voting for her?" And then I get to correct them and give a little lesson on parliamentary politics.
posted by gaspode at 2:58 PM on October 16

I hear you gaspode.....even worse that I actually went to school with Bret.....and once made the mistake of mentioning that to a supermarket cashier who mentioned his name. Oh my god - I was trapped for an age...I'm pretty sure I was just making up gibberish by the end to try and escape......."oh yeah, we used to hang glide together off the crow's nest when we were on compulsory Royal NZ Pirate Navy duty near Scott Base "
posted by inflatablekiwi at 3:12 PM on October 16 [2 favorites]

Voted last week, polling place 5 minutes walk from home, no queue.

And I'll limit myself to saying no more than that as the Electoral Act bans "Any statement advising or intended or likely to influence any elector as to the candidate or party for whom the elector should or should not vote". So no election day advertising, no exit polls till voting has closed, and no frenzied discussion on the (NZ) internet about how party X has it in the bag.

Hey Americans, it's possible to still have a functioning democracy.
posted by happyinmotion at 5:31 PM on October 16 [2 favorites]

Yup, voted today 5 minutes in and out - for the 'merkins here we still vote with paper, manually count them using volunteers (who are paid a little), we can vote at any polling booth in the country (outside my electorate it would be a special vote and counted later) my name was manually crossed off the roll, I presented a voter card I had received in the mail, it was NOT required, it simply had the page and line number of my name on the electoral day roll so my vote could be handled quickly. My polling place was 1/2 a block away - most are at schools or the occasional church

We're no legally allowed to talk on social media about who to vote for until 7pm our time - which is why all we can do is talk about the actual mechanics of voting
posted by mbo at 5:44 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

As mentioned upthread, we have an old-fashioned, out-of-date, but quaint, law about not using any sort of means, including social media, to promote a party or candidate, on Election Day. The Electoral Commission/Te Kaitiake Take Kōwhiri, which runs the election, even tweeted to a UK MP, Angela Eagle, asking her to delete a tweet, posted within the designated "quiet time", which had advocated support for a particular party here in New Zealand. The MP complied.
posted by vac2003 at 8:13 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

we still vote with paper, manually count them using volunteers (who are paid a little), we can vote at any polling booth in the country

I don't want to derail this to be about America but it should be noted that Americans do way more voting than I think anyone else (like some places dog catcher and tax collector are elected positions). There could easily be several dozen races on an American ballot and they are customized by county, city, water district, etc.

posted by Mitheral at 9:18 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

(The polls are now closed and initial results are coming in - we are weapons free in the thread again)
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:21 PM on October 16

NZ has local elections for things like City Councils & Health Boards etc every 3yrs via a postal vote - next one will be 2022. Most things are handled directly via councils or boards - we don't vote for dog catchers or sheriffs (Police are a nationwide thing that falls under a government appointed minister & commissioner) etc.
posted by phigmov at 11:26 PM on October 16

And in actual breaking news on the live blog....Prime Minister Ardern and Gayford's daughter, Neve, was "fighting against bedtime", [Gayford] said.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:27 PM on October 16 [2 favorites]

Man it's pretty clear NZ First is gone... I'm going to crack the champagne in the fridge. (Someone gave it to me: now I'm a real champagne socialist!)
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 11:38 PM on October 16 [8 favorites]

...the only excitement of the night is whether Labour gets 61 seats and can rule alone or 64 seats and can rule alone...

I'm still interested in what happens re. Green and ACT.

What I really wanna know is how the referendums shook out. No results for two weeks? Boo!
posted by colin.jaquiery at 11:40 PM on October 16

Also if Gerry Brownlee loses Ilam (currently 1000 votes behind Sarah Pallet with > 10% counted) I will dance a jig. And I broke my leg only 3 months ago.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 11:42 PM on October 16 [5 favorites]

Jeez I think David Seymour is drunk. He's slurring.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 11:51 PM on October 16

If Chris Bishop loses Hutt South who is going to finish his Twitter tour of the Hutt’s burger joints. Those burgers aren’t just going to eat themselves!

(and yeah he may get in on the list - but it’s just not the same)
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:54 PM on October 16

Also could Grant Robertson be killing it even more in Wellington Central. Up by over 7500 votes (!) with only 15% counted. It’ll be Cheese Rolls all around tomorrow.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 12:00 AM on October 17

Voted Green but if I knew they were going to do this well I would have voted TOP.
posted by L.P. Hatecraft at 12:01 AM on October 17

Pretty sure Robertson takes the same morning bus as me. NZ is just too small.

Also - I love that the PM's partner provided food to the journos gathered outside their house.
posted by phigmov at 12:08 AM on October 17

As someone who's had to deal in a personal capacity with NZ First this term, I can now say goodbye you mediocre, corrupt, and callous bunch of chancers.

(Tracey Martin excepted.)

Nail-biter of the night is Auckland Central:
2nd CANDIDATE: WHITE, Helen 6,167

Holy fucking shit, Chlöe might do it for the Greens. I've also dealt with her this term and I couldn't think of a better person to be an MP.
posted by happyinmotion at 12:13 AM on October 17 [8 favorites]

I checked. National have held Ilam since 1996, and its near predecessor Fendalton since 1946. Gerry Brownlee losing is CATASTROPHIC.

Sarah Pallett is a former midwife and has worked really hard, she'll make a great MP.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:42 AM on October 17

Rangitīkei has been National since 1938 and it looks like it could flip. This is astounding.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:58 AM on October 17 [1 favorite]

I'm sorry to see Winnie go. I wouldn't support NZF but they're the last of the old-style conservatives. Their reactionary voters aren't going away and will give their support to less reasonable politicians in future.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 1:45 AM on October 17 [3 favorites]

Yep, absolute slaughter.

We haven't had a single party government since 1993. Previously strong blue seats are flipping everywhere. Rangitata, the strongest conservative stronghold in the country has just gone to Labour.

I can't say myself I'm sorry to see Peters go. I'm really surprised they weren't pushing their regional development fund successes more. It's probably been their greatest asset since way back when he introduced the super gold card.
posted by Start with Dessert at 1:54 AM on October 17

I think it's incoherent to say that NZF voters will go other less reasonable places. They already went! And Advance NZ couldn't make even 1%, New Conservatives couldn't make 2. I would conclude that NZF support broke for Labour or National. Ugly populism has not succeeded in getting traction, thank goodness.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 2:45 AM on October 17 [5 favorites]

Have to say I'm bummed that Labour can govern without the Greens. I don't like the Jacinda cult and wish she'd got less than 50% and been forced to rely on the Greens but sadly it was not to be. Too many oldies freaked out by COVID-19 switching from National to Labour I suspect.
posted by L.P. Hatecraft at 2:49 AM on October 17 [2 favorites]

I wonder how many people heard New Zealand First's "we'll prevent the Greens from interfering" and decided to vote Labour instead so that a Greens alliance would be unnecessary?
posted by Paragon at 2:52 AM on October 17 [2 favorites]

Labour+Green vote here in Dunedin was ~75%
posted by mbo at 3:01 AM on October 17 [1 favorite]

Results at midnight, 98.4% counted (by hand) - in seats (120 seats in Parliament):

64 Labour
35 National
10 ACT
10 Green
1 Māori

With special votes still to count (usually they help the left a little)
posted by mbo at 4:13 AM on October 17 [1 favorite]

Chlöe won! Sweet as
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 4:30 AM on October 17 [5 favorites]

Whoa. That was certainly definitive.
posted by gaspode at 5:06 AM on October 17

Why such a long delay in posting results on the referendums? The govt. website says the results won’t be posted until Oct. 30.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:38 AM on October 17

I wonder how many people heard New Zealand First's "we'll prevent the Greens from interfering" and decided to vote Labour instead so that a Greens alliance would be unnecessary?
At least one.

(OK, more so that an NZ First alliance would be unnecessary. But it was a factor.)
posted by inexorably_forward at 5:41 AM on October 17

You know there will be huge challenges for Labour ahead - they own every problem solely now - with a lot of new faces that will include some screw-ups down list, and a massive economic hill to climb.

But for a moment - I’m just going to marvel at the glorious sight of left/center-left/green (the Greens took the central seat in our largest city! Fuck yeah!) just dominating on the strength of their results, and positive message and resolve for the future to be better for everyone.

As a NZer living in a state like Utah where (checks notes) our local hospital is at 104% ICU capacity, positivity rate in testing is routinely over 15% and sometimes over 20%, and we are getting almost NZ’s total caseload this year *every day* - while having 2 million less people than NZ - it’s like staring through some sort of portal to another dimension.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 5:54 AM on October 17 [7 favorites]

Just woke up to the news, fuck yas!

Labor set to govern alone (would have prefered in coalition with the Greens but I’ll take it).
Winston out on his ass.
And my electorate of Northcote flipped! I have a Labor MP!
Gerry Brownlee lost Ilam hahahaha

It’s not that I’m gloating but eat shit Nats.

Looking forward to the next few years. Top of my list is for the government to sort out the pay equity settlement with nurses so we actually attract and retain people into our health workforce (and so I can get paid commensurate with my actual level of knowledge and responsibilities, instead of earning less than a drainlayer makes).
posted by supercrayon at 8:14 AM on October 17 [3 favorites]

You know, this is also a big win for science - that is, a science-based pragmatic and decisive approach to COVID has been largely embraced by the electorate and resulted in Labour getting the largest popular vote of any party in over 50 years. If you are not convinced, look how the political polls have changed since March.
posted by piyushnz at 12:24 PM on October 17 [7 favorites]

And just as you mention taking a science based approach - there is one new community case in NZ today and it is immediately the lead story and tracking and tracing is fully mobilized to (hopefully) stamp it out. Seems like it was a port worker who dealt with foreign ships - was tested on the day they developed symptoms and had limited contacts between likely infection to diagnosis - and is now in managed quarantine with close contacts.

I mean it’s hard to scale that, but it’s pretty impressive when probably the biggest electoral story in a generation gets pushed aside in less then 18 hours to keep NZ COVID free.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 5:40 PM on October 17 [4 favorites]

cue the paranoid right claiming they were covering it up before the election in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ....
posted by mbo at 5:49 PM on October 17

Yeah but luckily last night showed just how limited those conspiracy voices are. Also given the second Bledisloe test tonight in Auckland I believe there is *zero* chance anyone would have hidden this.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 6:11 PM on October 17

NZers: Here in Australia we get party spruikers standing a legally-mandated distance from the entrance to polling places, handing out how-to-vote cards for how their party wants people to preference their votes.

Do your laws mean you’re spared this horrendous waste of paper and dignity?
posted by dumbland at 9:27 PM on October 17

I'm not sure if AU has a similar law but you can't canvas or advertise/plug parties or votes on election day - all electoral hoardings come down and no ads run. As per up-thread post, the Electoral Commission even called out a UK MP plugging the PM/Labour on Twitter (this law will get harder to enforce with the pervasive use of the internet/social-media; its kind of quaint & old fashioned but I like it). There are party electoral monitors at polling stations but they can't influence the vote - they're intended to keep things honest and call out irregularities.
posted by phigmov at 10:11 PM on October 17

That is very much not a law in Australia.
posted by Merus at 10:24 PM on October 17

dumbland: yep, no advertising - but also we wouldn't need how to vote cards because we don't have the same sort of preferential voting. Just one vote for a party, one for a candidate.

Was at a birthday party last night but managed to get the TV on with a bunch of Wellington Green supporters and some young Maori Party supporters. Good mood all round though we wished Debbie Ngarewa-Packer could have won for the MP.

Stoked for Chloe and for the strength of the Green vote (historically, we've done best when Labour was doing badly, with progressives switching between the two parties, just like ACT picking up disgruntled National voters now). So for us to increase our vote while Labour was doing so well is a great outcome. Especially pleased with us bringing Ricardo Menendez March and Elizabeth Kerekere into Parliament (side note: NZ now apparently has the queerest Parliament in the world, as well as the 7th highest percentage of women).

Anyone want to speculate on whether Labour will want to govern alone, or will consider offering Greens a coalition or confidence and supply? Can see advantages / disadvantages to all options, for both parties. (Also wish I'd seen the C&S question earlier and could have posted a thousand word screed, but you all probably don't need that....)
posted by Pink Frost at 12:19 AM on October 18 [3 favorites]

We had a large Greens sign outside our house, went out to take it down Fri night ~7pm (had to be down by midnight), found that the greens had beat me to it, they left a nice thank you note in the letter box
posted by mbo at 12:20 AM on October 18 [1 favorite]

Yes I will speculate! My prediction, based on almost nothing, is for a confidence and supply agreement with the Greens.

I don't think Labour will just ignore the Greens - I think a formal arrangement of some sort will show that they take small-g green concerns, like climate change, seriously.
posted by inexorably_forward at 12:44 AM on October 18

Updates NZ checklist
- Active space launch capability? Check
- Left leaning government? Check
- LQBTQ+ friendly? Check
- History of launching giant disco balls into space purely for fun? Check

If only there was an appropriate meme for a left leaning space based politics accepting of all lifestyles.
posted by inflatablekiwi at 8:19 AM on October 18 [2 favorites]

Yes I will speculate! My prediction, based on almost nothing, is for a confidence and supply agreement with the Greens.

I am not so sure. The whole point about a confidence and supply agreement in a Parliamentary democracy is for a smaller party to commit its votes to a larger party on the key vote of "supply and confidence" so that the Government retains the confidence of the House, and can therefore remain in government, and in return obtain things like advancing policy ,or getting parliamentary positions. It is a two-way, mutually beneficial arrangement. However Labour already, literally and actually, have the confidence of Parliament now with their majority and will do so for the next three years, regardless of any arrangement they come to with the Greens. They not only don't need a supply and confidence agreement with the Greens, it would actually be meaningless. And it would involve Labour giving up something to the Greens, like select committee chairs, or even Ministerial positions outside of Cabinet. Not sure Labour MPs would like that, given the overwhelming mandate Labour have been given. And for what? Literally nothing as Labour already have what a Supply and Confidence arrangement delivers.
posted by vac2003 at 12:28 PM on October 18 [2 favorites]

Yes. There will be a lot of pressure from Labour MPs in their second term or more to be in Cabinet now. Hard for Ardern to justify giving Cabinet spots away just to be nice.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 3:35 PM on October 18 [1 favorite]

I also understand that there may be political, as opposed to parliamentary, reasons for Labour to consider some form of arrangement with the Greens, and vice-a-versa. But even then, I detect in Ardern some caution on this. The electorate has given Labour all of the cards to play with, and I think Ardern wants that to be respected. While many on the Left want the Greens to play a part in order to push Labour leftwards (three voters in my household did that), but that is not what an absolute majority of the electorate want. Nor is there universal enthusiasm within Labour for working with the Greens either. The more I think about the sheer scale of Labour's landslide and all of its implications, the less likely I see the need for any sort formal arrangement with the Greens. But if indeed there is to be some sort of arrangement, it will be so broad and general that it will be largely, if not totally, symbolic.
[edited for clarity].
posted by vac2003 at 4:15 PM on October 18 [1 favorite]

The main political reason for Labour to bring the Greens into some kind of agreement is to neuter their power as an opposition from the left. It is a difficult choice for Labour, and a difficult choice for the Greens.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 6:32 PM on October 18 [1 favorite]

This is kind of a cool interactive showing the massive and almost universal swing to the (center) left
posted by piyushnz at 7:31 PM on October 18 [2 favorites]

There would seem to be a long-term advantage for Labour in building close relationships with the Greens, with a view to locking in support in future elections....except that we know the Greens are going to back Labour over National no matter what, absent some major changes.

The main political reason for Labour to bring the Greens into some kind of agreement is to neuter their power as an opposition from the left.

But yes, this seems like a more pertinent reason.

A strong argument against working with the Greens would be to retain Ministerial positions for Labour MPs. But OTOH, with no NZF anymore there's a number of decent portfolios available: Foreign Affairs, Defence, Health (presumably Hipkins won't hold on to it and Ardern won't bring Clark back), Economic Development, plus a few of the minor ones the Greens held in the last government. And then maybe someone like Twyford might get demoted. So Ardern could easily offer a few associate or full Ministerial roles, give the Greens a few manifesto wins in areas that Labour doesn't really care about.

I'm leaning towards predicting a C&S agreement along those lines, with plenty of agree to disagree provisions (or more likely, agreement only on some specific policies). But I'm thinking how many times everyone got those predictions wrong, so, who knows...
posted by Pink Frost at 11:48 PM on October 18

Just a different type of politics isn't it. One of the live blogs on Stuff or somewhere had a photo of the Labour Caucus meeting morning tea on Monday - the biggest tray of raspberry lamingtons and sausage rolls I've ever seen. Can't find the photo now - but nothing has made me as homesick in years. Had a PB of 15+ on the morning tea s-rolls in one sitting back 16 years ago or so......
posted by inflatablekiwi at 11:33 AM on October 20 [5 favorites]

A few interesting tidbits here:

Special declaration votes still to be counted are estimated at 480,000 (17% of total votes). This includes an estimated 66,000 overseas and dictation votes.

Voter turnout for the 2020 General Election is estimated to be 82.5% of those enrolled as at 6pm Friday 16 October. This compares with a final 79.8% turnout of those enrolled in 2017.

I wonder if the Greens will pick up a couple more seats - and also if the Maori Party can hold onto Waiariki.
posted by Start with Dessert at 11:10 AM on October 22

Preliminary results have been released for the referendums:

The vote on the End of Life Choice Act has revealed 65.2% in favour of the law, with 33.8% against. Meanwhile, the referendum on cannabis legalisation has the yes vote on 46.1% and 53.1% against.

Both results are just preliminary, of course, with the official outcome – incorporating almost 500,000 special votes yet to be counted – to be released next Friday.

posted by Start with Dessert at 6:22 PM on October 29

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